Leeds police show 'true spirit of Christmas' with whip round to buy gifts for seven-year-old girl

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Police in Leeds held a whip round to buy Christmas gifts for a seven-year-old girl taken into protective custody.

Realising that the schoolgirl would have nothing to open, they swiftly collected £100 for presents and wrapped them ready for this morning.

And their thoughtful gesture has won praise from police colleagues and social media users alike, with one describing their actions as the "true spirit of Christmas".

In her original message on Twitter, Detective Inspector Fiona Gaffney wrote: "Today a seven-year-old was taken into protective custody (a decision not taken lightly). Knowing she would miss out we did a whip round... officers in the station raised £100 and were able to buy her a load of Christmas presents and wrap them @WYP_PaulMoney should be very proud."

Chief Superintendent Paul Money, Leeds District Commander, replied: "Safeguarding with empathy, compassion and care. Heart warming gesture from Leeds police officers and staff - proud to lead and work with such great people #leedsdistrict."

Det Insp Gaffney's message has already been retweeted hundreds of times as well as being liked by nearly 2,000 Twitter users.

Sgt Patterson, an officer with Bradford District, said: "I am so proud to be a part of this incredible family. That is so lovely, how thoughtful. May you all go home to your families and have a wonderful day, Merry Christmas."

@Kella_Belle wrote: "That’s one of the loveliest things I’ve read today. Having been that child myself, I thank each and everyone of you. Merry Christmas."

@Cab1973Chris said: "It's heartbreaking that any child ends up in this situation especially at Christmas but what a lovely way to make it that bit better for her. Well done you amazing people. You should be very proud of your kindness and thoughtfulness. Faith in humanity restored."

@veej43 said: "Thank you for showing the true spirit of Christmas - protecting the helpless, and doing it in a way that eases the confusion the poor mite must be feeling."

@Drac49 said: "What a horrible job to have to, but well done all of you for doing your best for her. I do hope it works out well for her in the end. Happy Christmas to you all."

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